The Bartlett Development Planning Unit


DPU teams up with CASA and UCL Urban Laboratory for research project in Lima, Peru

12 November 2013

The Bartlett Research Materialisation Grant 2013 of £50,000 has been awarded to the project entitled Mapping Beyond the Palimpsest.

Barrios Altos street

This research project brings together three departments within UCL with Adriana Allen and Rita Lambert from the Development Planning Unit (DPU), Andrew Hudson-Smith from the Centre for Advanced Spatial Analysis (CASA), Ben Campkin, from The Bartlett School of Architecture/UCL Urban Laboratory. It is designed and undertaken together with CENCA, CIDAP and Foro Ciudades Para la Vida - a network of 57 organisations from 20 Peruvian cities, ranging from local government, academics and civil society groups- as well as local communities from two contested settlements in Lima, Perú.

Building upon the DPU research platforms ‘The Heuristics of Mapping Urban Environmental Change’ and ‘Water Justice in Latin American Cities’, CASA’s world-leading methodological innovations in spatial analysis and the Urban Laboratory’s ‘Picturing Place’ methodology, this research seeks to develop innovative and critical strategies for the reading, writing and audiencing of maps. It adopts a participatory action-learning approach, enabling local community mappers to explore innovative pathways for reframing hegemonic cartographies and develop the writing of more inclusive representations. It interrogates the role that such representations can play in contesting exclusionary socio-environmental processes and open up spaces for collectively negotiated outcomes between marginalised citizens, planners and policy makers, ultimately contributing towards the planning of more democratic and sustainable cities.

Taking into consideration the potential ethical, societal, legal and regulatory issues underpinning mapping, the research will apply innovative methods and rapid prototyping – such as 3D mapping, augmented reality, as well as 3D printing - to develop a digital archive in José Carlos Mariátegui and Barrios Altos, the two study sites in Lima. The main outputs are in the form of 3D models and a digital mapping platform. The latter will act as a repository for research on the urban Global South and an archive of knowledge accessible to those with interest in urbanisation, sustainability and justice. At the policy level, it will encourage better planning practices, representing wider citizens’ perspectives, ideals and aspirations. Moreover it will stimulate public debate and awareness and be a showcase for cross faculty and cross global collaboration.

For more information regarding the project email: Dr Adriana Allen or Rita Lambert.